On the eve of his 300th Grand Prix, Lewis Hamilton has finally spoken up about who he believed his toughest competition was.
Lewis Hamilton Names His Toughest F1 Rival
Before Lewis Hamilton, only five Formula 1 drivers have ever gone so far as to start in 300 F1 races in their career. Hamilton is, by all accounts, an institution in the industry known far and wide for holding the record for the most race victories and is tied with the one and only Michael Schumacher for most Drivers Championships won.
The only other active driver in the world to have started more races than Hamilton is the man that he has called out as his biggest competition… Fernando Alonso. With the Belgian Grand Prix around the corner, we know you’ll want to get in on the Formula 1 odds, so we’ll give you all the information you need to know to decide who you’ll be betting on.
Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1. Hungarian Grand Prix, Thursday 28th July 2022. Budapest, Hungary.
Lewis Carl Hamilton was born in Stevenage in the UK, and though he likely didn’t anticipate it back then, he’s become one of the most successful Formula 1 drivers in the history of the sport. He began his trip to these statistics when he was only eight years old and showed an aptitude for it early on when he won the British Kart Championship at just ten years old.
Only three years after that, his talent was noticed by the pros, and he signed on to the McLaren and Mercedes Benz Young Driver Support Programme. He made excellent use of this opportunity and learned all he could. When he was introduced to World and European Karting Championships between 1998 and 2000, he won both and, at only fifteen years old, became the youngest driver in history to be ranked number one.
His natural progression to car racing was next, and in 2003, he took home the British Formula Renault series championship by winning a whopping ten of the fifteen races that he took part in. In 2004 he competed in his first Formula 3 Euro Series and went on to win the championship in 2005. The following year he moved on to compete in GP2 and won the title in his very first season.
Hamilton’s rookie season on the McLaren F1 team would prove to be just as exciting when he came in second place, only one point behind that year’s winner Kimi Räikkönen. In that same year, his four wins brought him up to a tied position with Jacques Villeneuve for the most wins in a rookie season.
Continuing on the career-long hot streak, Hamilton won five races at the age of 23, which secured him the Drivers’ Championship and made him the second youngest person to do so until Sebastian Vettel usurped that honour. The majority of Hamilton’s career has passed in a blur of accolades and achievements, but can he keep it up? We’ll have to wait and see.
Fernando Alonso (ESP), Alpine F1 Team 19.05.2022. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 6, Spanish Grand Prix, Barcelona, Spain, Preparation Day. – www.xpbimages.com, EMail: firstname.lastname@example.org © Copyright: Charniaux / XPB Images
To be named as the top competition to one of the best drivers in the history of the sport is an honour in itself, but is Fernando Alonso up for the challenge?
Alonso also started his driving career in the kart races, but he began in a kart purchased initially for his sister’s use. When he entered the world of competitive karting in 1988, he won an unbelievable eight races in his first season. Shortly after that, in ‘93, Alonso came away from the Spanish karting championships victorious. Two years later, he came third in the World Championships and then became the winner of the Junior World Champs in 1996.
That same year, Alonso’s talent caught the eye of Adrian Campos when he was at the Marlboro Masters’ Race in Barcelona, where Alonso unsurprisingly finished in first place. It’s thanks to Campos and his Campos Racing Team that Alonso made his way into car racing and proved himself equal to the challenge.
Alonso’s debut Formula 1 season saw him driving for Minardi in 2001. He impressed everyone who saw him so much that the following year he test drove for Renault in 2002. It was here that he remained until 2007 when he switched teams and ended up driving for McLaren. Though his rise to stardom has been a little less meteoric than Hamilton’s was, that’s no indication of a talent that’s any smaller.
It was at McLaren that Hamilton and Alonso would team up for the first time and take the measure of each other fully. It was not a smooth ride for these two titans driving together, and the next few years would see a lot of turmoil for the McLaren team, which would ultimately see Alonso return to Renault.
His second stint was a little less comfortable than his first and the 2008 and 2009 seasons weren’t incredibly successful for him. 2010-2014 saw him driving for the Ferrari team, after leaving Renault for a second time, where he was significantly better matched. It was back to McLaren in 2018 and then finally over to Alpine from last year. Now tipped as a top competitor, we’ll see him prove his mettle against Hamilton and see who comes out on top.
Wrapping it Up
Alonso and Hamilton are two of the best; who will you be betting on to win?